काठमाण्डु टुडे २०७० असोज ३० गते १५:५७ मा प्रकाशित

Kathmandu, Oct. 16: The government is all set to upgrade the current driving license system into Smart Card, by December next year, thanks to the latest technology.

The government is learnt to have initiated all the necessary processes to transform the current driving license into Smart Card.

The government has already signed an agreement with the Madras Security Printers, India to change the existing driving license and its registration system to an electoral system with a grant assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), according to Secretary at the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure Development and Transport Management Tulsi Prasad Sitaula.

The ADB has already agreed to provide around Rs. 230 million to the Nepal Government to implement the Smart Card system and it is likely to endorse the assistance agreement within the next few days, he said. The assistance shall be provided under the ADB Information and Communications Technology Development Project.

The government and the Madras Security Printers on October 4 signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for printing 160,000 smart cards.  The Department of Transport, an implementing body of the project, has signed a MoU on behalf of the government.

As per the agreement, the Madras Printers shall provide the above mentioned number of smart cards to the Department before Mangsir 16, 2071 BS. The Department has already submitted necessary documents to the ADB resident office in the capital for the allocation of budget and endorsement of process related to that end, Department’s Officiating Director General Sharad Adhikari told RSS.

The Madras Printers was awarded with the tender of printing smart card through the international tender call and as per the public purchase procurement act. The Printers has proposed to print smart cards at cheaper price than presented by two companies in Spain and Malaysia which have also not stated the amount for technical works in the tender.

The company has presented a proposal to print the above mentioned number of smart cards at a cost of Rs. 109 million.As per the agreement, the Madras Printers shall install ‘hardware’ at the Department for the distribution of smart cards and also develop software to that end. Besides, it shall arrange necessary training to the Department staffs.

The company has also given three-year ‘guarantee’ of hardware and software it is going to install at the Department.  The development of mechanism necessary for issuing smart cards along with blue books (vehicle registration book) and its operation will be the task of the company itself. The smart card will have all the necessary details about driving license, blue book and vehicle, according to Adhikari.

The ADB had three years back proposed for grant assistance for the upgrade of driving license in Nepal.    All illegal activities relating to the issuance of driving license and registration of vehicles is expected to come to an end once the smart card system is implemented. This new system will help maintain the image of Department and promote good governance.

Under the first phase, 160,000 smart cards will be distributed and the number will be increased gradually. The right of taking a decision about printing the second round smart cards will be upon the Council of Ministers, he said.

According to the Department, so far, the Department has issued two million driving licenses and this number is increasing by 300,000 every year. Over 1.5 million vehicles were registered at the Department in the fiscal year 2069-70 BS alone. The number of two-wheelers is around 1.3 million.

The country has 10,320 kms of blacktopped road at the end of the last fiscal year 2069/ 70 BS, according to the Department of Roads statistics. RSS

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